Firestone Complete Auto Care Center Comes To East CLC Auto Program -

Firestone Complete Auto Care Center Comes To East CLC Auto Program

Bridgestone Americas Inc. and Akron Public Schools (APS) have announced a Firestone Complete Auto Care (FCAC) center will be added to the automotive technology lab at East Community Learning Center (CLC) in Akron, Ohio.

Located in Akron, Ohio, East CLC will serve as Akron Public Schools’ hub for engineering and technology under the new College and Career Academies model. Photo by Carley Hull / Tomorrow’s Tech.

Bridgestone Americas Inc. and Akron Public Schools (APS) have announced a Firestone Complete Auto Care (FCAC) center will be added to the automotive technology lab at East Community Learning Center (CLC) in Akron, Ohio.

Starting in fall 2018-19 school year, the new Bridgestone Academy of Applied Engineering and Technology center will give up to 100 students hands-on experience working with top-of-the-line automotive technology while learning business practices necessary to run a retail store. Additionally, Bridgestone Americas will also become a Named Academy Partner in the growing community of businesses engaging in the new College & Career Academies of Akron for APS high schools.

“Bridgestone is thrilled to be part of the College & Career Academies of Akron. This collaboration underscores our long-term, deep-seated commitment and ties to the Akron community and education in particular,” said Christine Karbowiak, chief administrative officer, chief risk officer and executive vice president, Bridgestone Americas. “Bridgestone is a leader in innovation, and this training center is a tangible representation of Our Way to Serve, our corporate social responsibility commitment. The center reflects our dedication to educating the next generation of automotive and retail professionals, using the latest technology, operational procedures and business practices offered in our Firestone Complete Auto Care tire and automotive service centers.”

East CLC’s auto lab will be transformed into a Firestone Complete Auto Care center, giving students hands-on shop experience. Photo by Carley Hull / Tomorrow’s Tech.

A portion of the existing East CLC automotive technology lab will be retrofitted into a Firestone Complete Auto Care center complete with software programs, a customer waiting area and equipment to service vehicles. Bridgestone will donate materials, fixtures and point-of-sale systems.

East CLC auto students will wear uniforms and run the center like a shop by providing limited auto maintenance services to the local community, allowing them to practice customer service and business practices. All revenue generated from service and sales will be reinvested into the program.

“The Automotive Technology program at East CLC has a long history of teaching students auto repair skills,” Chadwick Groom, East CLC automotive technology teacher, said. “This collaboration with Bridgestone Americas will strengthen our curriculum by providing students with more advanced training while learning about customer service and business fundamentals.”

The new center was inspired by Maplewood High School Automotive Training Center, a public-private collaboration between Bridgestone Americas and Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools to benefit Nashville education. Since the beginning of the collaboration in 2015, Bridgestone has hired 17 Maplewood graduates as store teammates and 12 as interns at Firestone Complete Auto Care locations in the Nashville region.

The collaboration between Akron Public Schools and Bridgestone was formed with the help of United Way of Summit County. APS was also designated a Ford Next Generation Learning Community in May, 2017.

Read more about East CLC’s auto program and their Monte Carlo project in our May cover story “Just a Car from Akron.”

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